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The Golden Age Of Light Music – Animal Antics
Various composers and artists rec. 1931-1957
Re-issues from 78s and early 33 rpm LPs ADD
For full track listing see below

GUILD GLCD5143 [78:29]

Experience Classicsonline


There’s so much to enjoy in this full and varied programme.
Dance Of The Little Pink Horse really sets the tone for what is to come. It’s a delicious little piece, full of the most felicitous touches of orchestration, and with a most disconcerting ending. Leroy Anderson is represented by two well known pieces – the graceful Waltzing Cat and the rumbustious Chicken Reel (in what must be a creator recording by Fiedler and the Boston Pops from 1948). David Rose’s My Dog Has Fleas is based on the four notes of the strings of the ukulele and banjo. This is a most inventive piece.

One of the real highlights of this disk is Sydney Torch’s marvellous arrangement of Friml’s lovely Donkey Serenade. We are bombarded these days with orchestral arrangements of current pop tunes under the title of Symphonic Whoever, the latest sensation in pop groups, and the arrangements only serve to show what a paucity of invention there is in much contemporary pop. Here is a classic arrangement of a great tune which, when shorn of its lyrics, still stands up to repeated hearings. What a superb musician Sydney Torch was!

Oliphant Chuckerbutty’s (believe it or not, this is only part of his real name – in full Soorjo Alexander William Oliphant Chuckerbutty) Fauns And Satyrs has really caught my attention – what will surprise many is that it is a scherzo which reminds one of Sibelius and Bantock in its orchestration! But what a piece!

Dance of the Three Blind Mice is a joyful fantasy on the well known nursery rhyme, with a marvellous part for xylophone. It’s good to hear Paul Lincke’s Glow Worm in a serious arrangement because the fabulous deconstruction undertaken on it by Spike Jones and his City Slickers sticks in the mind. But no matter how often I hear this version I do miss the car horns, pistol shots and ludicrous vocals.

It would be too easy to simply go through the whole programme telling you how enjoyable each work is but it’s not really necessary. Pick any piece and you will find something to enjoy – Jack Strachey’s Lambs in Clover is especially delightful. There I go again, wanting to describe the music to you. 

There’s nothing profound here, but who needs profundity when there’s such a wealth of great tunes, fantastic orchestrations, and very high spirits - try the Tiger Tango for all of these things. What is amazing is that every composer succeeds in making his presence and personality felt in a matter of a couple of minutes.

The sound is very good indeed, considering the various sources for the original material. The recordings appear to have needed little cleaning up, and we are presented with clear and clean sound for every track. The notes are pretty good too. This is another winner in a most enjoyable series.

Bob Briggs

Track Listing:
Bernie WAYNE (pseudonym for Bernard WEITZNER) (1919–1993) Dance Of The Little Pink Horse [02:02]
Leroy ANDERSON (1908–1975) The Waltzing Cat (1950) [02:41]
David ROSE (1910–1990) My Dog Has Fleas [02:33]
Rudolf FRIML (1879–1972) The Donkey Serenade (1912)–introducing Sympathy (arr. Sidney TORCH (1908–1990)) [03:08]
Arnold STECK (pseudonym for Major Leslie STATHAM MBE) (1905–1974) Morning Canter [02:39]
George ROSNER, Fred WISE, Xavier CUGAT (1900–1990) Nightingale (arr. Percy FAITH) [03:04]
Oliphant CHUCKERBUTTY (1884–1960) Fauns And Satyrs [03:14]
Howard WHITNEY Mosquitos’ Parade [02:02]
Donald THORNE (1901–1967) Dance Of The Three Blind Mice [02:43]
Paul LINCKE (1866–1946) The Glow Worm (1902–1940s) [04:16]
Ed ANDERSON, Ted GROUYA Flamingo (arr. Richard JONES) [02:08]
Jack STRACHEY (1894–1972) Lambs In Clover [02:48]
King PALMER (1913–1999) Meadow Lark [02:38]
Charles WILLIAMS (1893–1978) Snake Charmer [01:27]
Charles Wakefield CADMAN (1881–1946) I Hear A Thrush At Eventide (arr. Cecil MILNER (1905–1989)) [04:27]
Peter BARRINGTON (pseudonym for Felton RAPLEY) Peacock Patrol [02:38]
Kermit LESLIE; Walter LESLIE (pseudonyms for Kermit and Walter LEVINSKY) Gilbert The Goose [02:19]
Dolf van der LINDEN (pseudonym for David Gysbert van der LINDEN) (1915–1999) Pelican Parade [03:00]
Hoagy CARMICHAEL (1899–1981) Skylark (arr. Ron GOODWIN (1925–2003)) [02:30]
Eugene ETTORE Butterfly Fantasy (arr. Mischa MICHAELOFF) [04:02]
Leroy ANDERSON Chicken Reel (1946) [02:55]
Robert FARNON (1917–2005) Bird Charmer [02:48]
Clyde HAMILTON (pseudonym for Cyril STAPLETON), Robert EARLEY (pseudonym for Robert Frederick STANDISH (aka Bob SHARPLES)) Tiger Tango [02:43]
George LIBERACE (1911–1983) Bullfrog On A Spree [02:47]
Norman RICHARDSON March Of The Penguins [02:13]
H Ashworth HOPE The Frolicsome Hare [02:47]
Karl BELL  Frogs’ Wedding [02:44]
Colin WARK (1896–1939) Animal Antics [02:08]
Sidney Bowman (Whitney), Percy Faith (Rosner/Wise/Cugat), Ron Goodwin (Carmichael), Leslie Jeffries (Hope), Kermit Leslie (Leslie), George Liberace (Liberace), Mischa Michaeloff (Ettore), Cyril Stapleton (Hamilton/Earley), Sidney Torch (Friml), Dolf van der Linden (van der Linden), Louis Voss (Chuckerbutty), Bernie Wayne (Wayne), Victor Young (Rose) all conducting “their own” Orchestras; Leroy Anderson and his Pops Orchestra (Anderson), Boston Pops Orchestra/Arthur Fielder (Anderson), Danish State Radio Orchestra/Robert Farnon (Steck, Williams and Farnon), London Palladium Orchestra/William Pethers (Wark), Dolf van der Linden and his Metropole Orchestra (Palmer), New Concert Orchestra/Jack Leon (Thorne), R de Porten (Barrington) and Jay Wilbur (Lincke and Cadman), L’Orchestre Devereaux/Georges Devereaux (Strachey), The Pittsburgh Strings/Richard Jones (Anderson/Grouya), Central Band of the RAF/Squadron Leader A E Sims (Richardson), Regent Classic Orchestra (Bell).

 




 


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